UK: TECHNICAL PROBLEM WITH CORONAVIRUS DATA ONGOING


06/10/2020




Selin ATAY-TDO- British health minister Matt Hancock said on Monday a technical problem that ceased some positive test results from entering the contact tracing system was an ongoing incident. However, health minister added that the situation had not hurt government’s understanding of the coronavirus crisis.

The error meant that although those who tested positive were told about their results, their close contacts were not traced. It meant 15,841 cases between 25 September and 2 October were left out of the UK daily case figures.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock told MPs the incident as a whole had not yet been resolved. He said that only 51% of those whose positive results were caught up in the glitch now reached by contact tracers.

Matt Hancock said it had "not substantially changed" the government's assessment of the epidemic and it had "not impacted the basis on which decisions about local action were taken".  Hancock also stated that outbreak control in care homes, schools and hospitals had not been directly affected, as they do not rely on the data in question.

"This incident should never have happened. But the team have acted swiftly to minimize its impact," Health Secretary added.

Prime minister Boris Johnson said on a television program yesterday that all reported missing cases had been added to the system and they had been contacted, and work had begun to trace the people they had come into contact with. However, Johnson could not give any related figures.

Deputy Labor and Social Security Minister Therese Coffey spoke on a radio show about missing cases. "Unfortunately, I do not have this information," the deputy minister replied to the question of how many people could not be monitored due to missing cases.

When it was pointed out the risks that could be posed by this being delayed for days, the deputy minister said: "the error has been identified and the requirements are being done. We can't change what happened. But we can try to do everything necessary to ensure that such mistakes do not happen again."


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